Match Preview: Kent Spitfires vs. Essex Eagles

Wednesday 24th July 2019

Men’s First XI

Vitality Blast

Match Preview: Kent Spitfires vs. Essex Eagles

Kent Spitfires return home to The Spitfire Ground, St. Lawrence in Canterbury to welcome cross-Thames rivals Essex Eagles in the Vitality Blast this Friday.

Buy tickets in advance to save £5 on gate prices >>>

The Spitfires have won their first two games in the tournament, after Kent’s bowlers made light work of Somerset in their season opener, before Kent’s batsmen, big-hitter Alex Blake in particular, sealed victory away at Hampshire at the weekend.

Heino Kuhn is back available for the Spitfires after concussion protocol ruled the right-hander out of Kent’s first two matches. The South African averages 31.00 in T20 cricket for Kent since joining the club at the start of last season.

Alex Blake and Kent’s Afghan international Mohammad Nabi are currently joint-top of the club’s six hitting charts this year, with four apiece from two matches.

Left-arm spinner Imran Qayyum has taken the most wickets for the Spitfires so far this year with all five coming against Somerset, his career best return of 5/21. Fast bowler Hardus Viljoen is second with four wickets, two in each match.

Sam Billings (shoulder) and Joe Denly (England) remain unavailable for selection.

For the visitors, South African player Cameron Delport stole headlines on T20 debut for Essex, scoring 129 runs from only 49 balls against Surrey in an innings that included fourteen sixes.

New Zealand-born medium-fast bowler Matt Quinn has taken most wickets for the Eagles with four wickets from their opening two fixtures with a bowling average of just 13.50.

Essex are currently third in the Vitality Blast South Group, one place and two points below Kent, with their win against Surrey and a defeat against current table-toppers Middlesex. Two points are awarded for a win in the Vitality Blast.

Things you need to know

Live streaming

  • We will NOT be live streaming home Vitality Blast fixtures this season
  • The live streaming of away matches is subject to broadcasting rights and the discretion of the host county

Getting here

  • The Spitfire Ground, St. Lawrence in Canterbury enjoys good travel links with London and the rest of Kent
  • Full travel information can be found here
  • Gates open at 17:00 – two hours before the start of play
  • Both the Main Gate on Old Dover Road and the Nackington Road gate will be open but please allow plenty of time for entry
  • ALL bags will be searched on arrival – save time by leaving bags at home and leave plenty of time to get into the ground before start of play
  • NO alcohol will be allowed into the ground


  • There will be no public pay-on-the-gate or life member on-site parking (excluding pre-paid parking pass holders & blue badge holders)
  • Parking is now available at Simon Langton Girls’ School and will cost £10 on the day. This cannot be booked in advance
  • On-site parking for blue badge holders costs £15 for the day and cannot be booked in advance
  • We highly recommend use of the New Dover Road Park & Ride – CT1 3EL (£3.50 per day) – More information here
  • Additional Park & Ride services will run to and from the ground to fulfil demand before and after the match


  • This fixture counts as one day in the Six Pack package

Food & Drink

  • Spectators are NOT permitted to bring ANY alcohol into the ground
  • Food and sealed soft drinks are allowed


We are delighted to offer a new variety of food concessions for the 2019 Vitality Blast season, with a wide range of selections, including vegan, vegetarian and options for children:

  • Naughty Egg
  • Coffee & Cake
  • Sausage & Mash/Gourmet Hot Dogs
  • Ice Cream
  • Pimms tent
  • A Taste of Thailand
  • That’s Amore Pizza
  • Taco Bill
  • RAD Burger
  • Raclette Melt
  • Public bars in the Cornwallis Room (first floor of Colin Cowdrey Stand) and Les Ames Stand
  • Beer marquee

The club operates a Challenge 25 policy at all bars serving alcohol at The Spitfire Ground, St. Lawrence. If you’re lucky enough to look under 25 years of age, please bring photo ID with you if you’re purchasing alcohol inside the ground.


Toilet facilities are located around the ground:

  • Behind the Big Screen
  • Behind the Leslie Ames Stand
  • Behind the Frank Woolley Stand
  • Behind the Underwood & Knott Stand
  • Leslie Ames Bar
  • Cornwallis Bar (First floor of the Colin Cowdrey Stand)
  • Disabled toilets in the Leslie Ames entrance area and behind the Woolley Stand


The Kent Cricket Shop is located next to the Frank Woolley Stand and in the side of the Colin Cowdrey Stand and sells a variety of Kent Cricket merchandise, including:

  • Kent Cricket replica shirts
  • Kent Cricket branded clothing and accessories
  • Kent Cricket memorabilia
  • Cricket equipment
  • Hockey equipment

Match enhancement

  • Our friendly mascots Victa and Victoria will be in attendance
  • There will be a post-match player autograph session by the barrier outside The Lime Tree Café
  • No ball games are permitted near parked vehicles in the ground but access to the 3G football pitch inside the Kent Cricket Academy is available for use (no food is to be taken on)

Cash machine

  • All bars support contactless card payments but if you require cash, there is a cash machine situated at the Sainsbury’s supermarket outside the main entrance to the ground


  • The UK is currently experiencing a heatwave and temperatures at The Spitfire Ground, St. Lawrence for this fixture are expected to reach 27 degrees celsius
    • Spectators are advised to stay hydrated – free tap water is available at all bars in the ground
    • Empty refillable water bottles are allowed into the ground
    • Sunscreen is on sale in the Kent Cricket Shop
  • Sadly cricket matches are sometimes adversely affected by rain and play can be stopped
  • View the club’s Wet Weather Policy here

Kent Spitfires welcome Hampshire to The County Ground, Beckenham on Sunday 4th August as part of our Family Fun Day in Metropolitan Kent

Buy tickets in advance to any home Kent Spitfires fixture to save £5 on gate prices >>>